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August 25, 2010
Smoke from fires burning in British Columbia have sifted across western Canada and even as far as Ontario. This shows a partially obscured view of Provost from the top of Viterra a couple of miles east of town on August 20 just before noon. The provincial government was warning that “Smoke and fine particulate matter in the air can be absorbed deep into an individual's lungs where it can aggravate existing health conditions. People with respiratory conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma, or cardiovascular conditions such as angina, previous heart attack and congestive heart failure may be most affected.” Some people living west of the fires in B.C. remain unaffected by the smoke since it had been drifting eastwards. ©Provost News Photo.

Clinic Looks to South Africa For Three More Physicians
The two remaining physicians at the Provost Medical Clinic want a total of five medical doctors on staff and efforts have been underway internationally to achieve that goal.

The clinic has been understaffed by 50 percent since Dr. Jaco Hoffman and Dr. Ebeth Hoffman moved to Calgary at the end of June, leaving Dr. Deon Erasmus and Dr. Stephan Malan as the only family physicians in town. The Hoffmans came to Provost from South Africa on June 22, 2006.

Both Erasmus and Malan would like to have five physicians staffing the Provost Medical Clinic and are trying to recruit new physicians to join them.

Malan is in communication with two physicians that graduated with him in South Africa. One of them is interested in doing only a six month locum here while the other is interested in a two to three year commitment. Both physicians are married with children in South Africa.

Erasmus is in discussions with three new graduates from South Africa who have to complete their community service years by the end of December 2010 in South Africa. All are married with no children. One spouse is a chartered accountant, the second spouse is a speech therapist and audiologist and the third spouse is an aesthetician. These three physicians are however also in discussions with Lethbridge, Cold Lake and St. Paul to join medical clinics in those communities.

Erasmus is also in communication with a female physician from South Africa. She has been in practice for five years and is engaged to be married. Her fiancé is an emergency medical technician. A fifth physician in practice for 10 years, is married with two children and may also be interested in Provost. All of these physicians are prepared to come to town for two to three years except the one who wants to do a six month locum.

Spokesman for the Provost Medical Clinic, Antoinette Erasmus points out that the current situation is not unique to Provost since “Consort is also without a permanent physician, Vermilion is staffed by two doctors and Wainwright is also understaffed.”

Provost is in the central zone of Alberta Health Services that comprises seven communities that are in “critical need of physicians.”

The zone administration also does recruiting on behalf of these communities including Provost by advertising, attending recruiting workshops and trying to recruit new Alberta medical graduates. So far no family physician in Alberta—or Canada has shown any interest in practicing in Provost.

The Provost and District Health Services Foundation, Town of Provost and Municipal District of Provost are “great supporters in the recruitment efforts of Dr. Malan and Dr. Erasmus. Their help and assistance are invaluable” says Antoinette Erasmus.

Rest of story in August 25 edition of The Provost News.
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Close Eye Kept on Elm Trees Worth ‘Millions of Dollars’
A close eye is being kept on over 900 mature elm trees in Provost in case there’s an attack of fungus delivered by beetles.

One of the people doing the looking for signs of infection is Nigel Seymour of Brooks who is contracted by several municipalities and counties near the Saskatchewan border.

Keeping a close watch locally for the town is Al Dorman who again has traps set out looking for any sign of the elm bark beetle which might carry a disease which can in turn wipe out entire streets of elm trees.

Complete story in August 25 edition of The Provost News.
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Street Spokesman
This week we ask: "What Do You Like About Being at the Lake?"
. . . and we heard answers from Alex Sharron, Casey Thordarson, Levi Hunter and Kaylor Lunde. Check out the August 25 edition of The Provost News for their answers.
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This, along with many other stories and pictures can be found in this week's edition of The Provost News.
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